We have been back in Cooran for just over a week. My son turns 28 today. I have had an amazing week and today I want to tell you the story of what we have been doing, in the light of an article in the QWeekend magazine of the Courier Mail this morning. A friend of ours, Hayley Bartholomew, began a project she calls 365Grateful - www.365grateful.com - where she took a photograph of something she was grateful for everyday for a year. The reason she did it is important. She was unhappy with her lot - a very reasonable "lot" as it happens - and needed help to rise above the gloom she was finding herself in. The advice she followed to lift herself from this gloom, given by a Nun: " the secret to happiness is in reflection and gratitude". She was told to find something at the end of each day to be grateful for - no matter how small, and record it. Hayley made her record in photos. And today I decided to write a small piece on my week: Last weekend I had a crazy idea. I then decided that rather than just think about it I would attempt to make it happen. I spent Sunday writing up the program, designing a timetable of workshops, duties, recreation, healthy food and exercise: Bootcamp for my family. I managed to get everyone to agree to give it a go and on Monday morning we were all up at 6.30am and by 10am we were sitting round the table enjoying home made flat white's and discussing the days activities, having already been for a 5k walk/ride up to the creek and back, and cleaned the house. Reuben's friend Hank was staying over so there were five of us - Myself, Steve, Molly, Reuben and Hank. We exercised twice each day, studied music theory each morning, wrote and recorded a new song, made a video to accompany it, ate lots of great food (the favourite meal being bacon and eggs for breakfast), we cleaned the house together every day (each one doing a different job), we were inspired by the story of Joan Baez and we had a whole lot of fun together. Altogether it was a very successful week but I find I am just so GRATEFUL that we DID it. I have had many bright ideas in my life but mostly have gingerly whispered something to someone about it without ever actually doing anything about it: mostly hoping someone else would like my idea and take it up, or offer to help me with it. It would have been so easy to just say - "one day" - but I am just grateful that I did it. It was a risk but worth every bit of it. The big lesson I learned was that I should not make decisions according to other's opinions or reactions but according to my own convictions: it is only my own reactions and actions that I have any control over, not others'. I don't have a photo - yet - hope to get one next week when we go out to celebrate our week - and then I can put the photo up too. Thank you Haley, for the inspiration of your project, and thank you to my beautiful family - immediate and extended.

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